Thursday, May 5, 2011

Final Blog/ Rank Projects Best to Worst

6 X 1 Final Blog /Rate Projects Most Fav 1 to Least Fav 6

Sadly, this is my last blog for my favorite class 6X1. It’s going to be really hard to rate my favorites from most favorite to least favorite because I truly thoroughly enjoyed every one of them. Some of them I thought I would not like but ended up loving.  I will list my favorite 1 to least favorite 6.

1) Cameraless Filmmaking: this is one of my favorites, but I must say at first I was a little apprehensive, because I was worried I wasn’t going to be able to come up with anything cool. It’s a really strange thing making something that you won’t know how it turned out until you actually play it through the projector after it’s completed. What I liked most was actually learning how to do some of the fimmaking techniques used by Stan Brakhage and the likes.

2) The Bolex Long Take: I really enjoyed this one too because we got to not only shoot 16mm on the Bolex, but also got to hand process the film, something I’ve always wanted to do. I was really pleased with the outcome of the shoot, especially the exposure on the hand-processed film. To actually see the image appear in front of your eyes was pretty awesome.

3) Rythmic Editing: The big reason I liked this one so much was because, I was having a hard time trying to come up with a concept. But once I got a few things shot and looked at the footage, my concept came to me immediately. I really enjoyed coming up with cool bits and pieces of my footage rhythmically to tell a story.

4) Recycled Footage/Flxer: I was excited to do this project from the beginning, because I really like Craig Baldwin’s films of Other Cinema. He takes old found footage and recontextualizes it into his own narrative, while calling attention to social problems. The fun part of this assignment was going through videos on YouTube trying to come up with my concept. There are so many options; it was a bit overwhelming trying to pick things that fit together to tell my own 1-minute story. I was happy with the way mine turned out.

5) 48- hour video race: This project was fun; the best part was waiting for the “Mystery Prop” to see what our film was going to be about. I was a little apprehensive about putting myself out there to my peers with the theme of my secret. Then I realized I could do something totally silly and ridiculous, in which I did. It seemed to get a good comedic response from the class, which made me happy!

6) Multi-Plane Animation: This project was really fun but I found it very challenging trying to come up with a concept. I tend to over think things sometimes and I think this project was a prime example of that.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Yes Men Blog

Yes Men Blog
I had never seen the film Yes Men before our screening last Monday, and I really enjoyed it. I think they are very clever in the way they sort of re contextualize themselves as members of the World Trade Organization (WTO), and the funniest part is that no one seems to get that they are a farce even with the wild presentations they give. Or it could just be the fact that all of these people at these conferences really don’t listen to what’s going being said from the guest speaker at the podium, they are just there going through the motions.
I can see how this film relates to our final assignment the recontextualization of found footage, basically that’s how the Yes Men get their foot in the door at the conferences they are invited to attend. They make their logos, letterhead and so forth look just like the World Trade Organization’s. So at first glance people truly believe they are dealing with the real WTO. This is exactly the point I think the Yes Men are trying to make, that people believe everything they see and hear without checking the facts to make sure these statements are true, I mean come on, everyone knows the media most of the time is a complete manipulation of reality.
While looking for footage for my assignment, I started seeing other videos and in doing so coming up with other ideas and concepts. Things just started to fall in place after that.
I found a really cool video of a group called The Love Police, who sort of do the same type thing as the Yes Men, they were at the royal wedding and poking fun by using sarcasm against the royal family and their better than everyone blue blood ways. One of the guys who described himself and an absurdist anarchist was walking through the streets of London that are lined with retail stores, shoppers and tourists with a megaphone giving his absurdist type commentary on society. Some of his comments were pretty spot on as far as I’m concerned. He spoke out about organized religion, consumerism, the corporate controlled media and all of the war going in the world. I think it is hilarious; it was really pissing off some of the older people in the streets. I would say their techniques were very effective, because they got wanted from the public, a reaction. Maybe making them think for themselves instead of being controlled by the mainstream media.
I really loved this project but found it difficult to fit everything I wanted to use in the piece because of the one-minute time limit. I found that coming up with the initial concept was also pretty challenging, but like I said earlier once I started finding all of the different clips everything started coming together.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

My Fort Party Screening Experience

My Fort Party Screening Experience

I was totally surprised by the Mystery Workshop Part 2 yesterday. I was really wondering what we were going to do. I figured we were going to eat and screen the films along with the 3D footage and long take, but for some reason I was thinking we were going to do it outside in the courtyard or something. I was super excited and surprised about us having to build a fort.  It immediately took me back the days of being a kid and making forts with blankets and chairs with my brother. Those were the good old days. So a little nostalgia was sparked which made it even cooler. The gear from the equipment room really helped out in setting up a cool foundation. That was an innovative design for sure.  I must say it was definitely the biggest and nicest fort I’ve ever been involved with. I mean come on it even had its own movie theater. You really can’t beat that!!!
Everyone came together as a team and quickly and efficiently constructed beautiful Arabian Desert Style Tent Palace. Then we got to eat and watch all of the films we all worked so hard on.

Everyone’s films were all very impressive. So many good secrets told in so many different ways through so many different mediums of filmmaking.  I think there are a lot of talented filmmakers in this class and although everyone is a little different I think we all really bring something special to the table. I must admit I was a little nervous about how the class would receive my film, because it was a little silly and risqué and I’m usually pretty reserved unless I know people pretty well.  I was worried that the stuff I thought was funny wasn’t going get laughs but instead the sound of crickets. I was pleasantly surprised by the reception; everyone apparently understood my humor because it got a good laugh.

I was very impressed with the entire classes tent building, snack bringing and filmmaking skills. It was truly a wonderful experience with people that I think very highly of.  I think this class is the way all classes should be hands on and everyone working together and putting themselves out there. This was definitely one of my favorite things we’ve done this semester, but to be honest I’ve really loved every aspect of this class so far, it truly has been a pleasure working with all of you.

Monday, April 18, 2011

My Rough Theater

My Rough Theater

Well another project down and the semester is coming to an end, it’s crazy how fast it’s gone by. It must be because I’ve been having so much fun in my classes and especially 6X1. It really blows my mind how much we’ve learned and accomplished in this class in such a short amount of time.

I let myself stress out over the assignments sometimes, especially the last one, the 48-hour video race with the prop being the theme of MY SECRET. I think the reason I get so stressed, is because I one who always like to feel like I’m in control f a situation and going into these assignments where its kind of sink or swim leave me feeling little helpless because I feel like I’m trying to do some of these assignments on the fly, “off the cuff” if you will. I think that explains the term Rough Theater totally. In my experiences with Rough Theater have been just that, I usually get a little worried that my project is going to be crap, then after all is said and done. It usually turns out better than I had initially thought. This is due to the unexpected twists and turns that take place while trying to work with what you have available. My mind starts churning and gong into overdrive trying to figure out ways in which you can figure out how to incorporate your prop/theme and how you will achieve your goal with the restrictions and limitations that stand in your way.  

I think when people are put under pressure and deadlines their creative juices begin to flow and that is when some of the best ideas come out of the wood work. This has been true for several of the last projects that I would label Rough Theater. The animation, the Bolex long take , the 3d shoot, and now the 48- hour video race. They all have a very similar feel to them in the way that we are just working with what we have and trying to make something that is worth showing in front of our peers without feeling judgment. I’ve really enjoyed all of these exercises and think they have definitely made me see things in a new respect and help make me a better filmmaker. I didn’t realize how much this class would impact my life as a person and a filmmaker

Monday, April 11, 2011

Beat Stretch Response


     When we got this assignment I was a little apprehensive because I thought it would be really strange listening to a classical song such as this slowed way way down. I listened to the disk before going to bed and put it on track 3 like Andre suggested helping ease into it with a more mellow part. When the first song came on I was expecting to hear something right away, and nothing happened. So I checked the volume on my computer and it was up all the way. Then I realized that the sound may take a little while to get started, and sure enough after a few more seconds a very slow paced and soothing sound began to emanate from the speakers. The sound seemed to be one note that kept building but it really showed no resemblance to the original song like I had expected.
     After a little while of listening to the song (maybe 10 minutes or so) I just totally let myself go and tried to think of nothing and only feel the music. In doing so I felt myself going into sort of a trancelike state. The sound was making me feel as if I was flying over a rolling field of wheat or a green grassy countryside. It was a very peaceful and surreal feeling. The changes in this section all were pretty subtle but you could definitely tell there were different crescendos and valleys in the song. Instead of being only one body of work, it seemed like there were many different little soundtracks being played back to back. I could see this being played as many different pieces for many different films.
      It really amazes me the sound you get when everything is slowed down to this extreme. It sort of sounds like a revelation is taking place right there in front of you, I can envision space and the final frontier while listening to this piece. The notes that hold longer and are a little more screeching tend to get monotonous after a while. They leave me wanting for an end result of excitement or an upbeat tempo instead of more of the same slow paced blissful feeling.
      After listening on for about an hour and a half, I must have dozed off. When I awoke at about the three-hour mark or so there was a big change happening in the mood and feeling of the song. It began to get very loud and intense, and left me with a feeling of something big was about to happen. This must have been the reason I woke up. Although there were very subtle changes to the song throughout, there was really only one major shift in the four hours or so of this part three, which surprised me.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Response:Molotov Man

Molotov Man Response

When I first began reading this article I thought it was only about rebels fighting a cause, mainly because of the powerful image that’s displayed on the first page, which happens to be the image in question in this article. After a few sentences I quickly realized that this was relatable to what we’re doing right now in class with our found footage assignment and re-appropriation. This is a tough subject because it brings a lot of different emotions from the artists themselves. Most of the time artists feel like they are being stolen from and rightly so. Basically it really comes down to ethics, using artists pre existing works is a cool thing and I do believe you should have permission form the original artist to be able to use it but only if you are profiting from the use of that particular “borrowed” piece.

It's crazy how many people or groups ended up using this same Molotov Man image that Joy used and for so many different reasons, many having nothing to do with the original context. It really shows the power of an image and the way that image is presented can have a direct effect on the viewer. This says a lot about this image in particular and to me can be seen as only good publicity for the original photographer because the image is being spread to more and more people only giving the artist more coverage and publicity.

 When I used to hear rap music that’s made from using samples/loops from preexisting hits and try to pass themselves off as musical geniuses used to really get to me. The songs are mostly made of samples of popular songs throughout our history have always questioned and doubted the talent it took for these people to take a hook or line from an already established masterpiece of a song already and try to make it there own. Nowadays I have grown to like these types of songs because some of these hip-hop artists have taken sampling to all new levels making it truly genuine and unique. I believe it does take skill to take something that means one thing in and make it into something completely different and it helps to using image or sounded to people now that is popular because it subliminally gives them a leg up.

I really excited about the Found Footage Assignment and have been searching the Internet high and low for public domain footage to use. It’s going to be a lot of fun to take something that can be totally dated but a part of pop culture or history and make it into something new and fresh. What’s truly exciting is there are so many options for these types of films; all that limits the film is the filmmaker’s creativity and imagination.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Saturday Bolex Long Take

Saturday Bolex Long Take
     Today we had our Saturday shoot for our Bolex long take; the forecast was for 60 percent chance of rain, so I was a bit worried about our big day being cancelled. I even made sure and bring a raincoat and a few umbrellas, but luckily we didn’t even have to use the foul weather gear we’d all brought just in case Mother Nature was in the mood to make things a little more difficult.
     I have to admit it was a little scary going into this challenge without our faithful leader Andre, and in the back of my mind I was a little afraid something might go wrong. But once again everything and everyone cooperated with our efforts of expedient, and efficient filmmaking. Just as planned everyone in class came together as a team and worked as one like a well-oiled machine.
     While setting up for the shoot, processing and video transfer everything went extremely well and in no time we were all out in the field ready for several practice runs and blocking for the real deal. That process took up a majority of the allotted time for shooting and both groups I worked with ended up shooting there real take with about five or ten minutes left in the one hour and fifteen minutes designated for getting the shots done.
    Then, once we were done with the shooting, we went inside and hand processed the film. This part of the job turned out to be pretty sketchy, because a lot rides on this very important aspect of the process to actually making the hard work put in come together. If we didn’t properly expose the film we shot then all could be lost and all of the time we spent on it would have been entirely in vein.  As far as I could tell by the negative exposure everything turned out pretty well, but I guess we won’t really know how it turned out until we actually get the digital version back. I hope it looks good and if it needs fixing that it is manageable in post.
      I had a really good time today shooting and the four hours between 12:00 PM and 4:00 PM really flew by, It seemed like we were only there for a brief period of time, This means I must have had fun, like the old saying, “time flies when you’re having fun!“